Readers write: Nov. 3

Despite everything, we still should vote

I vote in elections because I believe it is the right and obligation of every U.S. citizen. Not everyone shares this belief, and there are some reasons. The value of your vote can be diminished if you live in a gerrymandered congressional district. Many campaign messages are so incredulous that you wonder what degree of deceit to expect if the candidate is elected. Then, once elected, some officeholders embrace reasons not to act unless their party’s desired outcome is assured or because their principles prohibit any compromise.

This neglect of duty has allowed our nation’s problems to grow and future solutions to become more costly and elusive. Americans vote for representatives willing to discuss problems, find solutions and vote their decisions on our behalf. We do not need them to re-name post offices.


Low turnout boosts special interests

The right to vote is one of our most precious liberties. Low turnout in off-year elections should give us all pause. When turnout is low, special-interest groups can more easily sway results. Single-issue voters rally support and have a much greater impact on results when turnout is low. This is why you see the focus on political attack ads. What we lose is a full vetting of the candidates on how they will actually vote and govern, based on their overarching socio-political-economic beliefs.

Our country, state and communities are facing very challenging times. We all deserve to be governed by the best people we can find, and this election is going to have a considerable impact on the direction our country will go in the 21st century. I hope everyone will engage friends and family to encourage them to educate themselves on the people and the issues on the ballot, and to vote.


Drilling endangers our kids’ future

Anastasia Swearingen’s call to drill for gas on Georgia’s coast are running on empty (“Protect nature, fill gas tanks,” Opinion, Oct. 29). Quibbling with environmentalists over spills, jobs and profits leaves out the most important reason to ban drilling: human misery. The impacts of hot-house gases from fossil fuels on our children and grandchildren are staggering. Scientists overwhelmingly agree, we can expect ever more damaging storms, property loss from coastal flooding and food shortages from droughts, all in this century. We are the first generation to fully understand the danger of climate disruption and the last generation that can stop it. Each new well endangers the future of America — and our loved ones.


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